I’ll tell you what’s the big deal – not having access to contraceptives due to trumped up religious dogma violates a woman’s right under the 1st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. The 1st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states, ” Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof“. Thus the 1st Amendment allows for the government to assert its role of “…protecting the right of the individual to choose to worship, or not, as he or she sees fit” .
This is an individual right and an institutional right to impose itself on the individual. The Right-Wing-Nuts have twisted the issue to try to make it one of freedom of religion. Even some Catholic Bishops have stuck their nose into the fray – not being able to motivate and guide their flock to not use any form of birth control (Note: Catholic guys use condoms, vasectomies – hmmm…very Catholic). The Catholic leadership might be better off cleaning its own home up of deviant priests who abuse children.
The government, by mandating that a religiously affiliated institution provide contraception as part of its health care package, is ensuring that any female who desires contraceptives and is employed by such an institution will have them. The fact that contraceptives are available in a health plan does not force a Catholic to use the pill – that is one’s individual choice. Thus it logically follows that a practicing Catholic female employed by one of these institutions should feel no pressure to go against her religious belief i.e., just not use the pill.
But we all know otherwise don’t we? A majority of Catholic women use or have used contraceptives at some point (National Survey of Family Growth). This means they have consciously violated Catholic dogma but, then, that is their choice – not the Bishops’. The fundamental issue is access to health care, specifically to contraceptives. This makes it the government’s right and duty to protect individual rights by not allowing the Catholic Church’s leadership to IMPOSE its religion by denying women contraceptives when they seek them.
You’ve already heard of Rush Limbaugh’s despicable attack on Ms Fluke. Maybe he should hold two Viagra’s between his knees! Seriously however, I recommend you read Joan Walsh’s article in Salon.com; she provides an excellent commentary on this issue. Additionally, see the video of the interview of Irin Carmon of Salon.com; she does a great job of explaining the issue.
Folks, if Limbaugh’s attacks on Ms. Fluke disgust you then do something about it. Support the boycott, write to Congress and, if you’re from across our border, send Borderless News and Views your comments. As The Progressive Latino, I blog on issues regarding Progressive Latinos. The follow stats are provided with sources from The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health.
- Fact: The overwhelming majority of Latinas, including Catholic Latinas, use contraception.
97% of Latinas who have ever had sex have used contraception. 96% of sexually active Catholic Latinas have used a contraceptive banned by the Vatican. 90% of married Catholic Latinas use modern contraception. These statistics come from the National Survey of Family Growth, a CDC survey (http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nsfg.htm).
- Fact: Most Latinas, including Catholic Latinas, support the coverage of contraceptives. 89% of Latina voters 18-34 support contraceptive coverage without copayments for all women. This statistic is from an opinion research report — Fully Covering Rx Birth Control, June/July 2010, Hart Research for Planned Parenthood Federation of America.
The Progressive Latino (TPL) is a blogger who established the blog “The Progressive Latino”. TPL believes the Progressive Movement is poised to transform America into a nation where every citizen has a “fair shot” as President Obama said, and that all citizens, especially those less fortunate have assured social and economic safety nets to carry them in their time of need. Although the U.S. Latino community makes up approximately 1 of 6 Americans, their voices are only beginning to be heard. Latinos can have a voice in their future. TPL seeks to inform, educate, enlighten, and to advocate for progressive policies.
Thanks to Veracity Stew for the Rush Limp-baugh and Viagra photo!